No Cough or Flu for the next 6 months.

I haven’t been sick with flu or cough for close to 7 months, and I plan to keep it this way as long as I possibly can.

The only time i got sick was a couple of weeks ago with food poisoning (eating food from a cafe), besides that I haven’t felt any ailments of a flu or cough for quite a while.

I don’t take supplements, no vitamin C pills either. My strong immunity is likely due to my diet, since I started having salad for brunches every other day on a weekday.

I still have not-so-healthy lunches at least once-twice a week, but make a point to maintain a salad brunch 3x a week. I eat like a normal person for dinner, with regular carbohydrate-packed, stir fried chinese dishes. On weekends, I eat like any typical Singaporean who love going out to eat.

My salad brunches have been the same the last 6 months, comprising of lettuce and rocket, cherry tomatoes and a sliced apple, topped with Japanese wafu dressing. 

My salad will be paired up with a bread bun, or 2 slices of toast if I need some carbohydrates. For those days when I go for only the salad, I will snack on processed foods like biscuits (not the whole pack! 3-4 pieces) when I get hungry at 3-4pm, other times I just go with more fruit, like a banana or another apple.

The past month, I discovered that putting together a couple of ingredients, which I found to be full of vitamins, minerals and health benefits, tossed together in a non-conventional salad can be a boost to my immunity and long term health.

Ingredients you need; Salad 1

1 Orange 1 Lime (not Calamansi, but the larger ones) 

1 cup of Organic Spinach

3-4 dashes of pepper (or more, if you like your pepper)

4-8 dashes of Tumeric 

 

Sounds like a strange concoction of ingredients, meshed together in a salad, isn’t it?

When you see what are the benefits of these ingredients, you will understand why;

Step 1 :  Orange and Lime

Slice up the orange into bite sized pieces, quarter the lime and squeeze the lime juice over the oranges. Then let the orange and lime sit for about 3 minutes

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These fruits are like natures’ medicine, full of vitamin C. Lime was the first fruit to be used in medicinal uses, it helps with weight loss, skin care, improved digestion, relief from constipation, eye care. And treatment of scurvy, piles, peptic ulcer, respiratory disorders, gout, urinary disorders etc.

While Oranges help prevent cancer, kidney diseases, lower cholesterol, boost heart health, fights against viral infections etc.  However don’t go for the easy option to buy Orange juice from the supermarkets, thinking that the benefits from the juice and the fruit will be similar.

Step 2 : Raw Organic Spinach with a couple of dashes of Tumeric and Black Pepper Salad 5 Spinach : Go for the Organic varieties as leafy greens like Spinach tend to have the most pesticides. Spinach is much more nutritious than lettuce, and it has Vitamin K, A, C, E, B2, B6, iron, calcium, folare,  zinc, dietary fibre. It is a heart healthy food, good for overall healthy cardiovascular system. Has magnesium to lower blood pressure, anti-inflammatory properties, and slows down the age-related decline in brain function and lutein for protection against eye disease. More here to be convinced.

Tumeric : Tumeric is an old Indian spice with a medicinal compound known as Curcumin.

Curcumin is a subtance with powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties, it boosts brain-derived neurotrophic factor, which is linked to improved brain function and lower risk of brain diseases. It lowers risk of heart diseases and can prevent (maybe even treat) cancer and has benefits against depression.

When taken with black pepper which contains pipeline, a natural substance that enhances the absorption of curcumin by 2000%.

However for this salad, don’t overdo on the Tumeric as it might give the salad a medicinal powdery aftertaste. Adjust accordingly to your taste buds.

Black Pepper :  Black Pepper enhances our ability to taste food. stimulating our salivary glands so we experience flavors more fully.

It is another heart-healthy food, regulates blood pressure and has cancer fighting benefits.

Step 3 : Add the Orange (with lime juice), and pour the remaining orange and lime juice mix in with the Spinach.

If you like your flavor of Tumeric and Black Pepper to be more intense, add some dashes of Tumeric and Black Pepper on the sliced oranges. Salad 6 Still think that it will taste strange? You will be surprised how appetizing this salad is.

The greens pair perfectly with the burst of sweet and sour citrusy flavors. When coupled with the earthier notes of mustard and horseradish taste of Tumeric, and the heat and sharp bite of black pepper creates a salad bursting with flavor and character.

For someone who doesn’t eat salads, but love food with black pepper, K finds the taste of this salad intriguing. Salad 8 I can eat this salad 3x in a week, without getting sick of its taste. As each time, the taste varies with the sweetness of the orange that I select for the salad.

Besides, the concoction of orange, lime, turmeric and black pepper also makes a great alternative for a salad dressing. So consider skipping the unhealthy bottle of Thousand Island dressing when you are planning to buy salad dressing at the Supermarket.

Give the Orange Salad a try, and you will surely see the rewards on your overall immunity and long term health!

 

Other Food Ideas on this blog :

A Healthy Breakfast Challenge

So take that, Wild Honey

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A SMB Bake Date!

It has been a crazy couple of weeks and I have been craving for cake.

Not the rich decadent sort, but something that could fulfill my cake craving and not have to feel guilty about eating it. I finally got to eat cake (that I made myself!) after spending Saturday morning with Pauline and Louisa of Munch Ministry, and 13 ladies from SMB, where we learnt how to make Hokkaido Chiffon Cakes.

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Part of the process in making a chiffon cake is beat the egg whites into a meringue. Unlike the traditional Pandan Chiffon Cakes that my mom used to bake often when I was a child, there isn’t a need for the egg whites to be beaten into stiff peaks for Hokkaido Chiffon Cakes. It isn’t that difficult to make the chiffon cake, however you will need to take note some of the small details in the process to achieve the light and airy texture of the cake.

The separation of the egg white from the egg yolk has to be done quite gingerly, to ensure that no egg yolk will find its way into the bowl of whites which will affect the fullness of the meringue.

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As you can see, the activity of separating egg yolks from the whites, can be easy for some like Estella. While for others, like Jennifer, some of the egg yolk did manage to find their way into her bowl of egg whites and she had to try to remove the runny yolks from the mixing bowl. As for my own experience separating yolks from the white? I wasted one egg after being too heavy handed, breaking the yolk when hitting the egg swiftly against the edge of a bowl.

Still need some help in learning how to separate the egg yolk from the egg white? Here’s 6 different ways how to separate egg yolk from the whites.

When it came to beating the egg whites, cream of tartar was added to stabilize the egg whites. Do make sure that the mixer and mixing bowls are clean and dry, Any specks of oil, water or yolk can affect the volume of the meringue. Here are more useful tips I learnt to ensure that the meringue stiffens;

1. Wait for the egg white mixture to turn bubbly and foamy during mixing before adding the sugar. The sugar needs to be added gradually in 3 parts, instead of all at once

2. Cold eggs separate more easily, so do leave the eggs out at room temperature before beating, for maximum volume in the meringue

3. Use copper, glass or stainless steel mixing bowl, and not plastic as it might keep some grease stains which will affect the meringue

4. A small amount of cream of tartar stabilizes the ‘foam’ and makes it less likely to collapse

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Digress. I think mom bloggers are experts when it comes to knowing when to stop what they are doing / pass the job to someone else, flash their pearlies and strike that perfect pose for 5 seconds, when a roving camera comes along for a photo opportunity.

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Now back to baking.

Mabel (my baking partner) and I shared the duties, she worked on the egg yolk mixture, while I focused on getting the meringue ready. We were concerned initially that the meringue mix was done too early and that it might curdle and collapse before folding in the egg yolk mixture. However, Pauline mentioned that the recipe will work fine even when the meringue is kept aside for a while before being added in (Phew!). Would have been a different story though, if it was Pandan Chiffon that we were attempting to make.

We gently folded in the egg yolk + vegetable oil batter into the egg white meringue and took note not to stir or beat the batter in, so as to ensure a light and fluffy chiffon cupcake. Then it was time to pour the mixture into cupcakes holders and pop in to the oven for about 15-25 minutes.

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The cupcakes were removed from the oven when it was lightly browned, and Mabel and I waited for the cupcakes to cool before piping in the custard filling.

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We were likely the most efficient team that morning, who got our cupcakes rather quickly into the oven then piped in custard fillings and we couldn’t resist picking up one each for ourselves to try. Probably on a good day with cake cravings, I could devour 5 of these at one sitting.

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Ta-daa! Team Efficient with our Hokkaido Chiffon Cakes!

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Munchministry 22Front (L to R) Mabel, Ai, Cherie, Estella, Louisa, Pauline, Nicole and Jiahui, Me, Regina and Caden. Adeline, Klessis, Connie, Liza, Jennifer, PC and Delphine.

Thanks to Pauline and Louisa for hosting this scrumptious bake date to add to the celebrations for our 1st birthday for SMB. Do check out Munch Ministry website for the recipe for Hokkaido Chiffon Cupcakes.

Do also read Mabel’s post on our baking session with plenty of candid photos.

What’s next for SMB is One? Stay tuned, details to be shared soon!

SingaporeMomBloggers

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Photo *Heart* Fridays – Hae Mee Tng?

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A Singapore hawker favorite made from a broth of prawn head and shells, pork ribs, garnished with bean sprouts, slices of prawn (sometimes pork), kang kong and fried shallots.

The first prawn noodle soup was brought into Singapore by early immigrants from the Fujian province of China. Then, the prawn noodle soup contained dried shrimps and scallops, which were brewed for at least 8 hours to make the stock. The dish was named Hokkien Prawn Noodle not because it was brought from the Fujian (Hokkien) province, rather, it was named as such, as the yellow noodles that usually accompanied the Prawn Noodle soup was made in Hokkien Street.

I couldn’t resist walking into the branch of ‘Beach Road Prawn Noodle Shop’ along East Coast Road after dropping K off from school this week, after noticing the number of cars parked alongside the shop every morning (except for Mondays, when the shop is closed).

Within the same shop, the owners also sold fried wu xiang. Most customers will order a plate of wu xiang to go with with their prawn noodle. But since a long-time resident and foodie of Katong area mentioned not to go with the wu xiang (as it is over-priced and not so tasty), I just went for the prawn noodle soup with bee-hoon.

The verdict? The prawn and pork rib soup was tasty and flavorful, best when served piping hot.

What kind of noodles do you like with your prawn noodle soup, bee-hoon or the yellow egg noodles?

 



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